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Religious belief is no excuse for refusing to shake a teacher's hand, authorities in a northern Swiss region ruled Wednesday, reversing one school's controversial decision to grant exemptions for Muslim pupils unwilling to touch the opposite sex. Parents of pupils who refuse to shake a teacher's hand at schools in the northern Swiss canton of Basel-Country could now face fines of up to 5,000 Swiss francs ($5,000, 4,500 euros), regional education authorities ruled. "A teacher has the right to demand a handshake," they said in a statement.
LONDON (AP) — A set of the first four editions of William Shakespeare's plays — dubbed the "Holy Grail of publishing" by Christie's auction house — sold Wednesday for almost 2.5 million pounds ($3.68 million).
By Jibran Ahmad PESHAWAR, Pakistan (Reuters) - Haibatullah Akhundzada, the Islamic legal scholar appointed leader of the Afghan Taliban on Wednesday, was not the obvious choice when senior members of the militant movement gathered to appoint a new "emir". The "shura", or leadership council, was convened in haste after leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour was killed by a U.S. drone strike in Pakistan on Saturday, presenting the Taliban with their second succession in less than a year. Unlike a similar meeting held last July, when an important faction walked out in protest, delegates agreed on the choice of Akhundzada, said Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid.